AP Sports SummaryBrief at 11:08 p.m. EDT
Heat still lead East finals, but Celtics roaring back with eye on history
MIAMI (AP) — The Boston Celtics are halfway to history, and that alone has gotten them entry into a very small club. Of the first 150 teams that trailed a best-of-seven series 3-0 in NBA history, just 14 of them found a way to extend the matchup to Game 6. Most are usually eliminated by now. Not the Celtics. They have cut the deficit in the Eastern Conference finals against the Miami Heat to 3-2. They trail the series yet seeming to have all the momentum going into Game 6 in Miami on Saturday night.
Golden Knights aim for closeout win; Stars eye comeback entering Game 5 of Western final
LAS VEGAS (AP) — Alec Martinez was part of the 2014 Los Angeles Kings team that erased a 3-0 first-round series deficit and beat Joe Pavelski and the San Jose Sharks in Game 7. Pavelski and coach Pete DeBoer were the centerpiece of a Sharks comeback from 3-1 down in the opening round of the 2019 playoffs to knock off the Vegas Golden Knights. And now, the Dallas Stars are trying to repeat history trailing 3-1 entering Game 5 of the Western final on Saturday at Vegas.
DeAndre Hopkins released by Arizona Cardinals, team takes big salary cap hit
TEMPE, Ariz. (AP) — The Arizona Cardinals have released three-time All-Pro wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins in a salary cap move made after they failed to find a trading partner in the offseason. The Cardinals made the move three seasons after acquiring Hopkins in a trade with Houston and signing him to a $54.5 million contract extension. The soon-to-be 31-year-old Hopkins would have counted close to $31 million against the cap this season. His cap hit in dead money is $22.6 million. Hopkins had 221 catches for 2,696 yards and 17 touchdowns in 35 games with Arizona.
Analysis: NFL can’t shake perception it doesn’t care what players and coaches think
Even when the NFL institutes a rule designed to reduce concussions, it can’t shake the perception that it doesn’t care what players and coaches think. The league took a step toward eliminating kickoffs this week by enhancing the touchback rule for a one-year trial with a priority on player safety. The receiving team will now get the ball at its own 25 with a fair catch of a kickoff anywhere behind that yard line. Some of the league’s most prominent coaches criticized the decision.
Indiana man center of gambling probes involving Alabama, Cincinnati baseball, AP sources say
An Indiana man whose son is a member of the University of Cincinnati baseball team is the bettor at the center of separate college sports gambling investigations, according to two people familiar with the inquiries. One investigation led to the firing of Alabama coach Brad Bohannon earlier this month. The other resulted in two members of Cincinnati’s baseball staff being dismissed this week. The people who identified Bert Neff of Mooresville, Indiana, as being connected to both the Alabama and Cincinnati cases spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because neither was authorized to speak about ongoing investigations.
‘Block’ party over at Colonial for PGA Championship sensation club pro
FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) — There will be no weekend party at the Colonial for Michael Block. The club pro from California who finished tied for 15th at the PGA Championship was 15 over par over a grueling 36 holes at Colonial. He was exhausted but thankful after the wild ride of the past week. His 4-over 74 on Friday was seven strokes better than his opening round in the Charles Schwab Challenge, where he got a late sponsor’s exemption after Oak Hill. He also has an exemption to play in the RBC Canadian Open in two weeks. So the Block party’s not completely over yet.
Kimbrel 8th pitcher in MLB history to earn 400 saves, Phillies beat Braves 6-4
ATLANTA (AP) — Craig Kimbrel became the eighth pitcher in major league history to earn 400 saves, Brandon Marsh hit a go-ahead, two-run single in the sixth inning and the Philadelphia Phillies beat the Atlanta Braves 6-4. Making his 730th career appearance, the 34-year-old Kimbrel worked a scoreless ninth to get his sixth save in six chances this season. Facing reliever Joe Jiménez with the bases loaded in the sixth, Marsh made it 4-3 with a single that scored Nick Castellanos and J.T. Realmuto. The Phillies scored twice in the seventh off Lucas Luetge on Trea Turner’s RBI double and Bryce Harper’s sacrifice fly.
Yankees’ Aaron Boone suspended 1 game by MLB for conduct toward umpires
NEW YORK (AP) — Yankees manager Aaron Boone was suspended for one game and fined by Major League Baseball “for his recent conduct toward major league umpires.” MLB senior vice president for on-field operations Michael Hill made the announcement and said Boone’s actions following his ejection from Thursday night’s game against Baltimore were among the factors in the discipline. Boone was ejected for the major league-high fourth time this season, the most among big league managers, when he was angry with the strike zone. He appeared to get spit on an umpire while yelling after he was tossed.
Biden celebrates LSU women’s and UConn men’s basketball teams at separate White House events
WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden has appealed for more support for female athletes during a White House event celebrating Louisiana State’s championship women’s basketball team. The event once appeared in jeopardy after Biden’s wife, Jill, suggested that the losing Iowa team be invited, too. Friday’s ceremony was briefly halted when forward Sa’Myah Smith appeared to collapse on stage. The Bidens lavished praise on the LSU Tigers for their performance and the way they’ve helped advance women’s sports. Neither one mentioned the uproar Jill Biden’s earlier comments caused. Biden also welcomed the UConn men’s championship basketball team to a White House celebration later Friday.
Varner leads LIV event as Koepka struggles in return from 5th major victory
STERLING, Va. (AP) — Brooks Koepka has returned from winning the PGA Championship just five days ago. It was a rusty return at LIV Golf DC. Harold Varner III leads the way with a 64. He leads by two over James Piot. Koepka had a flat round of two birdies, two bogeys and the rest pars. That gives him a 72 and an eight-shot deficit with two days remaining. Varner made two eagles at Trump National. The tie for third at 68 includes Cameron Smith and Andy Ogletree. Ogletree is a LIV sub. He’s filling in this week for Paul Casey.
Copyright 2023 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.